Staunton, Nov. 9 – The international GLOBSEC Center says that Russians have placed so many mines in Ukraine that it could take as long as 750 years to remove them if work in this sector continues at its current rate. Ukrainian officials say they believe they can do the job in 70 years, but even that means that the Russian mines will cast a shadow on Ukraine for decades.
Demining is not only slow and dangerous work but extremely expensive with estimates of its cost to Ukraine, the country which now has more mines on its territory than any other on earth, run into the tens of billions of US dollars (theins.ru/obshestvo/265804 and globsec.org/ sites/default/files/2023-04/Demining in Ukraine report ver5 web.pdf ).
According to Ukrainian officials and international aid agencies, the Russians often mine every conceivable thing when they retreat, including bodies, foodstuffs, and children’s toys, something that makes any Ukrainian advance difficult and dangerous because all these things have to be demined.
As a result of aid from the West, Ukraine has now some of the best demining equipment in the world. But what has been most inspiring both to Ukrainians and to others around the world has been the work of dogs like Patron who sniff out the mines and allow human beings to disarm and remove them.